WHAT HAPPENS WHEN I CALL 000 FOR HELP?
In our Winter edition, we thank Victoria Police for this article on the benefits of contacting Water Police via 000 and their ability to deploy the nearest and most appropriate rescue asset including all MSAR units, water police and air wing.
The Water Police have the primary role of coordinating all Marine Search and Rescue incidents involving recreational vessels. These incidents include overdue vessels, flare sightings, broken down vessels, missing divers, injured crew members and distress calls. Calling the Water Police via Triple Zero allows for the calls to be quickly and accurately processed so that the appropriate response can be provided as effectively as possible. It also allows for the appropriate rescue agencies and equipment to be deployed in a time appropriate manner.
When members of the public call Triple Zero (000) it is important to nominate the required emergency service as well as the location where the incident has occurred. Calling Triple Zero from an Advanced Mobile Location (AML) enabled smartphone will provide the police, fire or ambulance service with the coordinates of your location, while you’re talking.
The Emergency Management Act 2013 states that the control agency for Search and Rescue on Water (Marine Incidents) is Victoria Police. When the Emergency Service Telecommunications Authority [ESTA] call taker receives a call for a Marine Incident, the details are relayed to the Victorian Water Police.
The Water Police provide a twenty-four-hour response service. They receive and coordinate all marine incidents out of the Rescue Coordination Centre which is based in Williamstown. The Water Police patrol Port Phillip Bay, Western Port Bay and all other waterways throughout Victoria including inland, enclosed and coastal waters.
See more below
Coast Guardian No. 8 Winter ed 2022